Nielsen has published a new study into the effectiveness of podcast sponsorships and advertisements. The survey solicited 7,000 adult podcast listeners in the U.S., spread evenly across gender and age. The participants were given podcast clips, and in some cases also video clips with pre-roll ads, to compare ad effectiveness. The purpose was to measure brand lift across different measures.
Purchase intent is the particular “lift” where rubber meets the road for advertisers. The good news here is that 57% of the podcast ads Nielsen tested outperformed the video pre-rolls for intent to purchase. Almost 70% of respondents said that podcast ads increased the listeners’ brand awareness.
Reactions to podcast ads were generally positive among the respondents, with 78% saying they don’t mind ads or sponsors because the listener knows they support the podcast. Eighty-three percent said show hosts are authentic and natural in reading the spots, and 74% said sponsors were a good match for show content.
Almost 70% of respondents said the podcast spots they heard in the study increased their awareness of new products or services. Successful brand recall happened for 62%, and another 62% said the ad made them consider new products or services. More than half of the podcast ads did better than pre-roll in increasing purchase intent lift.
The study revealed that 66% tuned into the audio shows to learn something new. Nearly half said they choose podcasts for relaxation and calm or to be an informed citizen. Podcasts had the lowest response (less than 10%) for the reason of getting closer to friends and family.